Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Tom Leonard poem.

when the colonial oppressor
wears the proxy badge of victimhood
when the state talks about democracy
and boasts about democracy
and busses in its voters
from the 4 corners of the globe
when the possession of nationality
is a foot landing on an airport tarmac
and the dispossessed fester
in the camps of the dispossessed
when spokespersons for the state 
are good at explaining the current position in English
because they are English
and good at sounding American
because they are American
and the natives are hopeless spokespersons
who speak in heavily accented English
because they are not English
who don’t sound American
because they are not American
they are foreigners
on their native soil
and they sound like foreigners
because that’s all they are
to the English, and to the Americans
and to the incoming dispossessors
statehood is right to arms
statehood is control of the air
and the state walls up the natives
the state drives roads through their livelihood
the state uproots their livelihood
statehood is tank
statehood is bulldozer of homes
state killing is not killing
state killing is justifiable context
state killing is the operation of justice
stateless killing is simply killing
stateless killing is never context
stateless killing is motiveless evil
we are the state
you are the stateless
the battle is good versus evil
what more history do you need?
to accuse the state of oppression
is genocide
to accuse the state of racism
is genocide
to accuse the state of colonial expansion
is genocide
no one wants to be accused of genocide
much better to turn a blind eye 
but the state is oppressive
but the state is racist
but the state is intent on colonial expansion
and the state colonises the past
the state says its people are the single victims of history
yet many are the victims of history
no single people has precedence
we inherit no victimhood from the murdered in the genocides of history
we Inherit no guilt from the murderers in the genocides of history
they are the dead
we are the living
who alone are responsible for our actions
who cannot forever blame our role as victims   
to be oppressive
to be racist
to be intent on colonial expansion
wearing the proxy badge of victimhood
Tom Leonard

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